The ever popular….CUPCAKES!

My roommate walked into my room, some might call it more of a closet, to find me writing a list of things that make me happy. First on the list: my cat, Chester (duh). Second on the list: cupcakes. My new found love might be cliche since they’ve become so popular as of late, but I have to say I wasn’t prepared for the sheer amount of fun I had while decorating them.

When I was home over the holidays I found a tucked away stash of professional decorating tools my mom bought when she was about my age.  Apparently she and her mom took a cake decorating class (and another class which was incidentally taught by the then not-famous Diane Sawyer) and kept all the equipment. Woo hoo! So here’s what I came up with. The color scheme is for my brother.

Professional Icing Recipe:

  • 1/2 cup crisco
  • about 1 pound confectioner’s sugar/powdered sugar
  • about 1/3 cup water (this can vary depending on how humid your kitchen is)
  • 1 tbsp almond extract


Start off with the crisco and slowly add in the powdered sugar, blending with a hand mixer. When it gets to thick to mix, add some of the water, a little at a time, and the almond extract. Once that’s mixed in, add more sugar. This process continues until you have a fairly thick icing so that the shape will keep when you use it to decorate. Milk can be a substitute for water but then you have to refrigerate it.

If you prefer to add color, use a gel. This won’t water down your icing and it requires very little.

*If you prefer vanilla icing just make sure you get clear vanilla flavoring. You can find it sometimes in the baking section of the grocery store. Otherwise, your icing will turn brownish. *

Here’s a website that shows how to fold a parchment triangle into a bag for icing.

And here’s one that shows all the different icing tips you can get if you are  feeling adventurous with your funds.


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